Ard Bit — Amazing Bubble II


The Netherlands have always given us joy in the form of talented electronic musicians. A few names spring to mind right off the bat: Kettel, Secede, the duo Funckarma, and also Rutger Zuydervelt, better known under his stage name Machinefabriek. Their art is really different stylistically speaking, but one thing is clear: each one of them excels at processing either the rhythm, or the melody, or even (in the case of Machinefabriek) field recordings.

Today we shall speak of another Dutch artist, Ard Jansen, a composer, sound director, field recordist, and the author of the project Ard Bit. It is known that Ard was admitted into the Royal Conservatoire of The Hague in 1999 where he studied electronic composition in the Institute of Sonology. He got his degree in June of 2003.

In the second part of the improvisatory musical series Amazing Bubble, Ard studies the nature of combining modular synthesis and field recordings. In contrast with his debut album Spanon, his latest work completely lacks any rhythm section whatsoever. The first two pieces could be described as authentic "underwater" ambient, that is tender and professionally literate in its nature. As for the third piece, its beginning is a bit more rough than the previous ones, reminiscent of the sounds of moving furniture, yet it transforms into "careful" ambient once again later on.

The fourth composition is accompanied with a video, where one can easily read the glitch esthetic of the label Mille Plateaux, created by graphic designer Sibe Kokke. A soul-haunting symphonism can be felt in meticulous parts of Ard Bit, which makes this art akin to Rafael Anton Irisarri's debut work Daydreaming. It seems there are very few steps that keep the work of the Dutch composer from becoming an example of modern classical music rather than just ambient.

Amazing Bubble II is a rich, diverse and multi-layered work. Each track is akin to a movie scene. It can be compared to a soft and tender structure with sharp edges in the shape of acute sounds of modular synthesizers.